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Tips On How To Organize A Pantry

Updated on June 19, 2013
My pantry before getting organized.  I don't miss this mess at all.
My pantry before getting organized. I don't miss this mess at all. | Source

Why Organize Your Pantry?

Do you always feel like your pantry is too small or that you can't find what you need when you need it? You might just need to rethink how you organize your pantry. Here are the best tips and advice for organizing a pantry.

Purge Your Pantry

First things first - clean out your pantry. Pull everything out from your pantry and start from scratch. If you are never going to eat it, donate it or toss it. The key is to only keep things you need and/or want - the other "junk" is just cluttering your pantry.

You might be surprised at some of the forgotten things you find when you do this.

I love my Hefty Solutions storage bins for keeping like items together.
I love my Hefty Solutions storage bins for keeping like items together. | Source

Store Like With Like

As you get ready to put everything back into your pantry, group all your like items together - pasta, grains, canned goods, etc. Now, when you are making dinner you know exactly where to look for what you need, rather than rummaging through three shelves just to find a can of tuna.

You can also use storage containers to keep groups of items together. For example, we grouped all of our teas and drink packets into one hefty storage container, pictured to the right (like this one on amazon.com for $7).

Storage Solutions

If the layout of your pantry makes it difficult to access everything you need, consider getting help. I don't mean professional help (although that is an option, too). I am talking about storage bins, turn tables (lazy Susan's), shelf dividers and shelf bleachers. It's amazing how a few simple storage options can transform your pantry.

I am particularly fond of the cloth storage boxes for things like chips and snacks ($10, amazon.com). They are easy to get in and out, they keep the pantry looking neat and it's almost like having a pull-out drawer in your pantry.

Use Mason and Ball jars to keep bulk foods organized and accessible.
Use Mason and Ball jars to keep bulk foods organized and accessible. | Source

Tips For Storing Dry Goods

I love shopping in the bulk foods section to save money on groceries. But, a pantry shelf full of plastic produce bags wasn't cutting it. Plus, my husband couldn't tell the difference between a bag of steel cut oats and a bag of barley, which meant he just used neither.

So, we turned to hermetic jars (the old-fashioned ones with a clamp and a rubber seal) and mason jars. This is also a great way to repurpose old glass jars, such as the one your pasta sauce might come in. Labeling was also a key to this. I'm hoping to replace my current labels with chalkboard labels soon, but in the mean time, a permanent marker does the job just fine. The clear containers also make it easy to tell how much you have left, so you aren't buying another pound when you have two jars in the pantry.

Are You Ready To Get Organized

Sure, my pantry still doesn't look like something from Pinterest, but it's getting there. In fact, at a recent game night, I was showing off my neat and tidy pantry with pride. Now that my pantry is organized, we are cooking at home more, spending less on groceries and eating more healthy food. What's not to love about that?

Tell me your tips on getting (and keeping) your pantry organized.

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    • Written Up profile imageAUTHOR

      Written Up 

      5 years ago from Oklahoma City, OK

      Thanks Rosie. I'm so happy with the way my pantry turned out. Funny thing is, cooking is even more fun now.

    • Rosie writes profile image

      Rosie writes 

      5 years ago from Virginia

      I definitely need to organize my pantry. You have given me some practical ideas. Voted useful.

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